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James Jacobs wrote:This is a harder nut to crack than it sounds, honestly. WotC's "delve" format, which they started using toward the tail end of 3rd edition, was one attempt to make adventures easier to run, but it made them VERY difficult to write and quite unsatisfying to simply read.One of the things you mentioned in the first quote James was, I think, perhaps lost upon some of the people who read it and then posted here. DeathQuaker got it right. It's not a small point, so it bears repeating (if I may be so bold).
I think this is spot on.
I would say, though, that reading is not like reading fiction. When a GM first looks through an adventure they read it in order to get a sense for the feel of it and how much enjoyment it would be if they ever got a chance to run it. The writing, therefore, has to have a narrative flow to it and be enjoyable to read, but when it comes down to running the thing the requirement is quite different.
During running, the adventure becomes both a handbook and a work of reference. Information has to be easily found and presented in a way that minimises GM "gotchas".
When I wrote Dance Macabre I tried to solve this problem by marking the GM "reference" stuff in bold but leaving the writing otherwise in narrative format. I'm not sure how well that worked. It looked a little bit like a patchwork quilt.
Later on I realised that the problem had been exacerbated with Dance Macabre because that adventure contained a lot more interrelated plot (i.e. complexity) than usual and this tended to obscure the reference information.
The answer might be, therefore, to present the narrative in such a way that the location descriptions are self-contained and easy to understand, especially since the beauty of adventures is that generally speaking when PCs are in location A the GM doesn't have to worry terribly much about what's going on in location B. If the writer can keep location descriptions relatively simple then the GM will quickly be able to readily read or go to the information that she needs in the heat of the moment. You still need the narrative / flavour / why-this-adventure-is-cool writing around there, but it has to be placed in such a way that it doesn't obscure the heat-of-the-moment stuff, while still delivering an enjoyable read.